Joan Selby
May 11, 2017

10 Most Common Email Marketing Mistakes And How To Avoid Them

Common Email Marketing Mistakes

Before we get on with the list, we need to say that the biggest mistake pretty much all marketers make is thinking that email marketing is no longer important or relevant in the age of social media. The truth is that as many as 54% of marketing experts think of it as the most efficient marketing tool, and 89% of them rely on it to generate leads for their business.

Common Email Marketing Mistakes

According to John Roundtree, the head of marketing at Essayontime, a lot of marketers make grammar, spelling and punctuation errors. And while these might seem harmless to some, they nevertheless hurt your business. That being said, let get on to some of the more serious email marketing mistakes, and ways how you can avoid them.

1. Not Featuring Responsive Design

Having great written content is important, but people still hang on to stunning visuals. And this is where you should be looking if you want your email marketing campaign to make an impact. A clear and visually appealing design can make it easier for the user to click on the call of action button. But remember that the majority of people nowadays open their emails on their smartphones and tablets. So you should also aim to make your design responsive. This means that everything needs to look good on a smaller screen as well.

2. Not Customizing Your Lists

These days, users like to feel connected to a product or service as if you are addressing them personally. If you keep on sending the same email message to everyone on your list, a lot of your pitches will fall on deaf ears, so to speak. But even if you don’t have time to send a custom email to everyone, you can analyze your leads with the help of analytics software, and divide them into groups with similar needs and interests. Then you can send a customized message to each of the groups.

3. Being Overly Promotional

You want to sell your product or service, which is fine. Of course you are going to promote it. But as we have mentioned earlier, people like to feel connected to what you have to offer them. Being overly promotional automatically makes it all about you. Your pitch should be geared more toward your customers and their needs. Simply put, it should sound as if it’s more about what your customers need from you, not what you need from them.

Being overly promotional automatically makes your pitch all about you. And that no longer works.Click To Tweet

4. Generic Subject Line

These days, people don’t spend a lot of time reading lengthy messages or those which are too vague or unspecific. The same goes for your email subject line. You should make it very direct, so that the user knows from the get-go what’s it all about. If it’s a sale, a discount or an offer, make sure to state so right away. Remember, people will only check out the content that is relevant to them, so create your subject lines with that in mind.

5. Not Tracking Campaign Results

Tracking the results of your email marketing campaigns I can provide you with a fantastic insight into what works and what doesn’t work. For example, if a user has signed to test your service for free for a limited period of time, that’s great news. However, the not so great news would be if they haven’t decided to purchase a premium package. Sometimes, you simply need to send them a follow-up email to remind them to purchase your product. Easy, but you wouldn’t have known that without tracking the results beforehand.

6. Not Building Your Database

You can only begin your email marketing campaign if you have someone you can email. So, how do you find people you can email? Well, you can start with your personal network of contacts, or have your online subscribers provide you with their email addresses. You can even import emails from your LinkedIn contacts. One thing you should never do though is to buy emails lists. Apart from anything else, it’s a waste of time and money, since those contacts don’t represent your target audience. They haven’t pre-qualified themselves as leads. It’s better to focus on those users who are interested in your product, to begin with.

7. Emails with Too Many Calls to Action

While it may be tempting to kill several birds with one stone, if you have multiple calls to action inside a single email, your target audience members may only end up being confused. Remember, people prefer to open emails which have a specific subject line, and which are relevant to them. If your email features too many CTAs, they might not be clear about your message.

8. Having Too Much Text

Nowadays, people scan the text, rather than read it, and your emails are no different. If they are too long, people aren’t going to bother with them, which means they won’t click on your CTA button, either. Make your message more concise, and optimize it for scanning. Also, having a nice image to go along with your text is essential.

Make email messages concise and optimize them for scanningClick To Tweet

9. Sending Too Many/Too Few Emails

More doesn’t always equal better, when it comes to email marketing. Sending emails too frequently, as in several times a day (or for some, daily), will cause your audience to become disinterested. However, the opposite is also true. If you are sending one email a month, they will forget about you. The key is to find the right frequency with the help of analytics data and A/B testing.

10. Required Login to Unsubscribe

Sometimes, you can’t win them all, meaning that some users will no longer want to receive email messages from you. In that case, you should make it easy for them to unsubscribe, without having to login to do so. In addition to that, you should remove the unsubscribed users from the list as soon as possible, so they don’t keep on receiving the emails which they may then report as spam.

The Final Message

Email marketing is still as relevant as ever, but you need to learn to use it effectively and avoid some of the most common mistakes. With these tips, you will be able to make the most out of your campaign and grow your audience and sales.

What Do You Think?

Do you agree with the above? do you have any additional thoughts you’d like to share? Please scroll down to the comments section. We will happily engage.


Images: Copyright: ‘‘ / 123RF Stock Photo

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Joan Selby

Joan Selby is a former ESL teacher and a content marketer. She also runs her own blog about social media and writing tips. Joan is a Creative Writing graduate and fancy shoelover. A writer by day and reader by night, giving creative touch to everything. Connect with her on Twitter and Facebook